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Shadow War Armageddon

It has been quite the gap in updates.  Sadly work has been quite hectic and I just wrapped up a course to boot.  However, I think I will be getting a bit of hobby time in the near future.  Much like the rest of the miniature wargames community, I too jumped on the SW band-wagon.  In my defense, I was planning to start a Necromunda type game in my club.  I have obviously not been following the GW news or I would have been aware it was coming.

So far, I have enjoyed the game.  It is a bit more stream-lined than Necromunda, but it gives more variety of opponents and lets people play with stock models without going crazy on conversions.  Naturally you should be well aware I will go crazy on conversions.  If you are on the fence about this game and liked Necromunda, I recommend it.  If you despised all 2nd Edition 40k iterations, stay clear.  If you have never played these ancient games, then it is a fun game to play that emphasizes a small unit so it is good for converting and building good terrain.

Inquisitor Kill-team. Mostly Games Workshop models, one Warzone figure.

Chaos Kill-team.

I have two painted and complete warbands right now.  These were formed from existing models with a bit of details on a few to make them seem more kill-team like and less generic trooper #7.  If you look closely, some of my Necromunda project has made it into the Inquisitor kill-team while the Chaos kill-team is using Necromunda models.

As the league starts with the local club my terrain will be heavily used, but I will also be trying to get a terrain workshop running to get the members learning how to build terrain.  As an added bonus the new gamestore will have a huge influx of terrain afterwards.

If people are interested, I may go back and do detailed pics of each model.  And naturally as I convert more they will be showcased.  The Chaos one requires the least work surprisingly.  I modeled my entire Iron Warriors army quite extensively to have the feel of troops late in a campaign and scrounging for what they can.  As a result they all are very dynamic and characterful.

Ork in ‘eavy armour conversion.

Ork in ‘eavy armour conversion.

Ork in ‘eavy armour conversion.

Ork in ‘eavy armour conversion.

Ork in ‘eavy armour conversion.

I have also done a converted Tau kill-team, something that will be the topic of a later update.  Why?  Well, there is a guilty pleasure I have entertained.  In my youth I found Orks rather silly and out of place in the 40k setting.  As I got older I saw they were more a parody of modern society than anything else.  They models and conversion opportunities were what always made me jealous.  Sure, I custom built each vehicle used in my Iron Warriors.  Yes, I have scratch-built other vehicles (two of which have been showcased here).  In fact, I have also sculpted models.

So why would Orks be something I am jealous of?  Well they are just so characterful.

The first custom-built model is showcased here today.  I built my own heavy armour by adding on plates and ridiculously over-sized rivets.  I am not sure if I am happy with the rust wash formula I used this time and I see it went on a bit heavy in some places and too light in others.  I will probably leave him as is, he looks good enough.

Will he be useful in the game?  I have no idea, but he was fun to build.  That is the mantra I have had with the Orks I have built and they will be my next major project.  Every ork is carefully planned and put together.  So this will be a fun project with lots of conversions and character.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to feed that little voice in your head.  You know the one, that silly kid who tells you what to do but as an adult we have to hush up.  Until next time.

Lurking on the Fringes

It has been quite the long gap in posts, and I am sure more than a few people will be surprised to get a messaging popping-up on an update on this blog.

I have been quite busy with work and social activities the past couple months with little time for hobby stuff.  I have managed to squeeze a bit of time to play 40K in, but mostly because I was asked to take part in a league that has games every two weeks (so fairly easy to manage).  Today’s update is mostly a few odds and sods that I have been working on, with absolutely nothing having been completed.

Games Workshop Tau Piranha.

Games Workshop Tau Piranha.

As 40K has been the bulk of my hobby time, a few of my Tau models have been getting some paint.  Although the basic hull is about 90% done, this needs a lot of work.  The white is fairly smooth, I just need to clean up the mess from my black-lining and of course paint the crew and compartment.

 

I have enjoyed playing my Tau and I did buy a few models, but I have committed less than $100 to this army between getting models in trade and on sale.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

As the title picture shows, I have started a new terrain piece for the urban terrain.  I have decided to use some of the random plastic pieces from my junk box to make a power relay station which is also built on a piece of MDF.  I clad the outside in a foamcore wall and built the small out-building and have called it done.  There are a few other minor details but they won’t really look like much until it is painted.

 

Bugbear by Reaper Miniatures.

Bugbear by Reaper Miniatures.

Bugbear by Reaper Miniatures.

Bugbear by Reaper Miniatures.

Another couple WIP have been my Reaper figures.  I got quite the large assortment of Bugbear miniatures in Bones 2 and I have just started painting them.  I had put on the base coats on a few of them when I decided I wanted to build one up to finished on the skin tone.  At that point, I had a friend contact me and ask if I could teach him how to paint…that night.

 

So he brought over a few figs and I showed him a few techniques, but these bugbears were the most handy.  Between the different stages of progressive layering he was able to see how I paint and he even threw paint on a few while he waited for paint to dry.  By the end of the night he had a good enough for table-top miniature for his paladin character in the weekly DnD campaign he is playing in.  He also decided to gift a few minis to his group and my box of Bones turned up 3 members of the group for him, leaving him with just one more fig to get for Christmas gifts.  As for the bugbear, I will still need to finish his armour and make his fur stand out more with highlights and a wash.  And the weapon of course needs lots of work too.

Stone Lurker by Reaper Miniatures.

Stone Lurker by Reaper Miniatures.

Stone Lurker by Reaper Miniatures.

Stone Lurker by Reaper Miniatures.

Also getting a bit of paint is the Roper.  Reaper calls it a Stone Lurker to avoid lawsuits, but it is obviously the iconic underground horror the Roper.  I am not sure what else I want to do with this guy.  A wash or two on the tentacles will tone them down for starters and I am not very happy with the mouth on top.  The eye needs a bit of work too.  In other words, it is very much still a work in progress.

I have always been fascinated by that monster since I was a kid and I loved the artwork in the AD&D Monster Manual as a kid.  Something about it just seemed so unnatural and weird.  Funny thing is, I have never faced one in a game nor have I used one as a monster in a game I ran.

Anyhow, now that I have a painted miniature, maybe it will make an appearance at some point in a game.

So a bit of a short post with a lot of variety, but hopefully still inspirational.  If nothing else, it shows that even with a long hiatus from hobby time it is possible to jump back into things.

Retro Vengeance

Or at least Avengers anyways.

I painted these models quickly yesterday for a game of Warhammer 40K I was supposed to play today, but sick kids ended-up having me cancel the game.  Oh well, at least they still look good.

Games Workshop Dire Avenger Exarch circa 1994

Games Workshop Dire Avenger Exarch circa 1994

Games Workshop Dire Avenger Exarch circa 1994

Games Workshop Dire Avenger Exarch circa 1994

Games Workshop Dire Avenger Exarch circa 1994

Games Workshop Dire Avenger Exarch circa 1994

This marks the third time these guys have been painted.  I stripped them twice  before and they sat unpainted in my box of Eldar for quite a number of years.  I still need to finish the bases.  Both flocking and painting the edges.

I had trimmed most of these years ago but I forgot I bought a few additional Avengers in a separate purchase and apparently I didn’t trim the flash or mold lines at all on those.  Oh well, it isn’t noticeable from a distance.  I might go back and clean the offending models up.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.

The fluff behind the Eldar always struck me as fascinating.  They are a mentally (and psychically) advanced race that has chosen to focus on dedication to different aspects/professions.  The Dire Avengers are one such profession, although not all professions are military.

In the background the uninhibited lifestyle they had lived, before the current period, created an entity composed of passion and vice that fed on the souls of dying Eldar.  The only survivors of this cataclysm were the Puritan-like exiles who fled the unwholesome society before this destructive birth of the demon Slaanesh.

That said, they seemed very dour and no nonsense.  The published colour schemes for the Eldar always struck me as oddly contrasting to that background: they are very brightly coloured.  These Aspect Warriors are supposed to be blue so I decided to go with a black base and gradually build up to blue but still keeping them dark and somber.  I feel that my colour scheme was a success.

To get an idea of the garish colours used, check out the internet and see.  I hesitate to show pictures as my Persians have already assaulted the eyes of my regular readers enough.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994.  Necromunda Escher Ganger and Hired Scum.

Games Workshop Dire Avengers circa 1994. Necromunda Escher Ganger and Hired Scum.

The action shot shows a couple of gangers desperately trying to hold the line against advancing Dire Avengers.  Things look grim for these two.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to try dusting off those old minis and give a new paint scheme a shot.

Car Shopping and other nonsense

Ok, maybe not car shopping per se, but I did get a few new vehicles for my sci-fi urban terrain.

Honest John's Cars.  Very few miles and only one living owner.

Honest John’s Cars. Very few miles and only one living owner.

Widow poses for a selfie.

Widow poses for a selfie.

Truck to scale as it is a large crew-cab truck.

Truck to scale as it is a large crew-cab truck.

While the wife was in the big city, she managed to find a shop that specializes in die-cast cars.  The truck is 1/43 while the car is 1/46.  Noting the side by side comparison it does make the truck look a bit bigger and the Tempo/Topaz look a bit smaller.  Either way, I think they are fine…the truck looks a bit bigger while the car looks a bit more compact.

The best part of these vehicles was the price: about $10 for the trucks and $6 for the cars.  Yes plural, I do have two of each.  At least one of those Tempo/Topaz will get the Mad Max treatment.

In addition to the new vehicles I did manage to finish  another building.  There is also one on the assembly line.  I am very impressed with how quickly these can be turned out for a pretty good result.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Sci Fi urban terrain.

Again, a simple little showcase with a few miniatures I had kicking around.  The last building is the newest one.

Finally I do have a few 40K figures that got some paint recently too.  These are Pathfinders from the Tau army, a scout unit.  So I felt ghillie suits were a good match for them.  Yes, even the flying drones have ghillie suits.  These will likely be the OPFOR to the small special ops team I have (including Deano and Widow above) when not used in 40k.

Games Workshop Tau Pathfinders.

Games Workshop Tau Pathfinders.

Games Workshop Tau Pathfinders.

Games Workshop Tau Pathfinders.

Games Workshop Tau Pathfinders.

Games Workshop Tau Pathfinders.

Quite the eclectic mix for the update today, but hopefully no less inspirational.  If nothing else, I hope you too are encouraged to look at other hobby stores to find material for your selected hobby.

Walking Wounded Complete

I found a bit of time and I managed to get the greaves finished for the Dreadnought project.  Coincidentally, I received a message shortly afterwards from the new owner asking how it was going.  I wanted to keep it for a day or two to ponder and look over for missed points, but he was eager to get it and wanted to get to work on making it more chaotic.  So I snapped the pictures below to have a record of the greaves.

Dread_update51 Dread_update52 Dread_update53

I did a simple shape, curved and cut to account for the slant of the legs.  I mounted them on a piece of stand-off armour to still allow movement of the knee joint.  I left the gap intentionally.  For those familiar with how modern armour works, spaced armour provides more defense against high energy weapons.  The first use where the track guards used by the Germans in WWII when they realized it actually saved the tanks.  I won’t bore you with physics (Google can help with that) but basically the air-gap means the weapon system loses energy on the first layer and can’t even damage the next layer.  For a battlefield with lasers and death rays, I figure the most vulnerable part of this vehicle would use something similar.

In trade for this beast, I received a few models pictured below.  These will likely see double service.  In addition to their intended use as 40K miniatures, they will likely become the opposition forces for the special ops team I have on the to do list.

Tau1

With the putty out for the gap filling, I also finished off a sculpt I had in progress.  The aspiring champion for my possessed chaos space marine unit.

Obligatory orange cup shot.

Obligatory orange cup shot.

Possessed2 Possessed3 Possessed4

The first thing that should be obvious is I have gotten lazy with my photography again.  Poor lighting, washed-out details.  Oh well.

I went with a reptilian/insectoid type scaling/chitin look.  It does tower over most other models as the other possessed model shows.  I think he will make the squad much more intimidating.

So a bit of a dog’s breakfast today, but hopefully something was inspiring in these snippets and scraps of the ongoing projects.

Walking Wounded Part Four

With the kids busy with a clean and organized play-room (yes, that was daddy’s doing) I was able to find the time for the dreadnought.  Well, not quite finished.

As the soon to be owner wanted to kit-bash on a sarcophagus onto the front, it is left unfinished.  Likewise, the close combat weapon and arm is not attached and can be taken apart into 3 pieces for ease of painting.  I also didn’t go too crazy on the nurgle aspects to allow him some play, he was saying he wanted to use some greenstuff he has, so I will leave him to that.  The gouges and rough edges will suffice for my contribution to a rusted and broken machine.

Dread_update41 Dread_update42 Dread_update43 Dread_update44

As these pics show there are a few gaps in the edging to be filled.  I added crude hinges to the foot joins and a complicated looking (although very easy to build) toe assembly.  Obviously the greaves still need to be added too, but the toe and leg details won’t be very visible with those bulky pieces in the way.  And I also missed one piece of edging and I still need to gap fill the edging joins.

The request for a change of weapons came.  Instead of the initial idea of a power-scourge, he wanted to go with a thunder hammer instead.  So I pieced one together via lamination.  A bit of creative mindless sculpting to show a demonic weapon and presto.Dread_update45 Dread_update46 Dread_update47 Dread_update48

A very productive day all told between getting the kids an organized play-room and (almost) finishing off this miniature.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else how a bit of green-stuff can help fix any ham-fisted errors on building.

Walking Wounded Part Three

It has been quite a while since I have found time to do hobby stuff.  Between a plague descending on my house and the Christmas activities that make my work pretty much a write-off for December…well I actually had work that needed to be done this December.  Long story short, I haven’t had much time to play with toy soldiers.

Well, I have taken the time to get a bit of progress done on the Chaos Dreadnought.  The pictures show the legs are now attached, but green-stuff filling needs to be done at the hip coupling.

Chaos Dreadnoughts aren't big fans of leg work-outs.

Chaos Dreadnoughts aren’t big fans of leg work-outs.

A close-up of the legs shows the gaps that need filling and the start of the knee joints.  I will be filling in with green-stuff across the two discs and detailing an articulation point on the back.  The feet and greaves (what else would you call reinforced leg armour on a walker) still need to be done.

Close-up of the legs in progress.

Close-up of the legs in progress.

Part of the reason I haven’t made as much progress was wasted time looking for a hole-punch.  We had a nice 3-hole punch that worked ok, but the wife told me we didn’t have a single hole-punch.  Well the 3-hole punch is AWOL but in looking for it I found a single hole-punch.  It works very nice.

Anyhow, I have started on some of the putty-work to fill gaps and smooth transitions.  The lascannons are more or less done now.

Dread_update34

And the piece that had just finished getting the basic shape done is the powerpack/engine.  My soldering iron was heating up very fast and I spent a lot of time with fiddly placing of the radiator vents so that explains the brown scorch marks.  On the other hand, the eventual owner was saying he wanted to do a nurgle dreadnought (that is the Chaos god of death and decay) so the melted spots can function as either rust or melting…very much in line with the theme.

Dread_update33

A short update today, but hopefully useful to some readers out there.  I found myself reviewing the APC build a while back and it is impressive seeing how that came together and once this is finished I am sure it will be similar.

Hopefully something inspired you today, and if another post doesn’t make it, Merry Christmas to you.

Walking Wounded Part Two

Work has kept me busy the past few weeks but I did manage to find some time to do a few things on the Chaos Dreadnought project.

Oblique hull.  Oooh, artistic.

Oblique hull. Oooh, artistic.

As shown above I have started some of the detailing work.  Filling and touch-ups are needed with greenstuff and of course some of the more crazy chaos type icons are outstanding.

Power scourge arm detailed.

Power scourge arm detailed.

Lascannon detailed

Lascannon detailed

Both arms are coming along as well.  The lascannon housing has an ugly looking seam right now, but with some putty it will look very nice I am sure.  The joins between the edging are pretty obvious in this picture, again something a little putty works wonders on.

The power scourge arm will have some detailed articulation added in at the elbow and under the shoulder.  There is an ugly seam/sanding spot on this too that will get some putty TLC.

Propped-up hull

Propped-up hull

Propped up hull with figure for scale

Propped up hull with figure for scale

The leg joins have been crudely shaped out and just need a bit of “welding” and putty details to attach them.  First though, the legs need detailing.  The final parts of structure to be built will be the engine, leg details, feet, and leg armour.

A short update today, but hopefully no less inspirational.  For those who are wondering how easy it is to scratch-build, hopefully this has given you that nudge to give it a whirl.

Walking Wounded

So the other day one of the local wargamers was asking who wanted some models he was getting rid of.  I was interested in what he was offering so asked him what he wanted.  He gave a list and I was pretty sure I had those so told him I would check my boxes of bits and dusty models and get back to him.

In the end I didn’t have what he wanted but he still wanted to give me what he was offering.  So I thought about it and decided I would build him one of his requests: a Chaos Deadnought (that’s a GamesWorkshop 40K miniature).  I have never built a walker but had considered the construction before and figured it would not only be a fun project…it would give me something.  Oh, and provide a proof of concept for some crazy walker models I had in mind…keep an eye on this space as at least one of those walker ideas may bump the Hellhound tanks down in priority (think Hellhound in a more literal sense and you get when my twisted mind is wandering).

The photos are terrible as they were just snapped quickly with my phone and I am actually away from home right now so there won’t be better pics for a while.

Hull Photo

Hull Photo

Hull Photo

Hull Photo

The basic hull was thrown together quickly while watching a movie in one night.  The first picture shows scale with a ruler.  The basic concept of the dreadnought is a life-support battle suit.  Critically injured veteran soldiers are entombed in this machine of death.  The flavor text for the Chaos versions has become very grim as they call it a torture.  If nothing else, the soldiers in the dreadnoughts are kept fully conscious even when the machine is powered down and other soldiers are in stasis.  A bit disturbed.

Basic leg design

Basic leg design

Basic leg design

Basic leg design

The leg mounts tend to be a bit more crude and rugged compared to other sci-fi walkers so I have chosen an angled axis with custom rounded tubes for legs.  The legs will be modified to include hydraulic tubes and plates to the front.  I will detail the join and cover it with what looks like an articulating rotator cuff.  If you know tie rods attach to an axel you have the basic idea.

Lascannon

Lascannon

Lascannon

Lascannon

Lascannon

Lascannon

The chosen shooting weapon is a twin-linked lascannon.  I wanted to make it a bit more cobbled together so I went with offset and angled weapons.  The join to the housing will be filled in at a couple gaps and sensors will be added into the gap above the outside gun.  I will also be adding cables and wires dangling down out of the housing into the barrels to match the 40k stylized old-tech new-tech imagery.  The gun-arm will be mounted to a peg with minor details sculpted (that will not be very visible) to give the sense of realistic movement and depth to the walker.  The barrel ends will likely come from my bits box as mechanical leering demon heads although I may opt for a more standard lascannon barrel end.

The left arm will be a melee weapon of sorts.  The local wargamer has already started building the weapon himself (he is pretty excited about the project) so I will just be making the arm and mount.

Of course what you see so far is just the basic shapes and blocks.  I intend to add embellishment and possibly even a leering demonic face to the front of the hull.  The basic embellishment will be framing around edges to give more depth and the stylized 8-pointed star that defines Chaos in the 40k setting.  Spikes and maybe some quasi bio-mechanical parts are on my list of possibilities too.

Hopefully something inspired you today, if nothing else to see if your talents in miniatures might go towards helping you help others.

2013 in Review

I know I am a bit late in putting my New Years post up.

Normally, most of these posts end up reading as a review of the past year, but I decided to go a different way.

2013 in Review

2014 and Future Plans

When I first set this blog up it was to motivate me on projects, something I was reminded of as I was moving my 6mm guys around recently and I realized there is still work to be done.

That being said, below are the bare minimum goals I am setting for 2014:

  • Finish the 6mm FUBAR armies I have started (that means a few additional units for each of the 3 armies)

Echelon target  Stray Forces

  • Start and finish my 4th FUBAR army – the Ramiro Corporation

DSCF6246

  • Paint at least one HOTT/DBA army (Early Imperial Romans, Achaemenid Persians or some mystery army TBD)

DSCF6056

  • Finish the two Devil Dog tanks (some projects have a habit of sitting half completed)

DSCF6123

  • Paint at least 500 points of Confrontation models

Not lofty goals and I am certain other projects will come up as well that will be done.  I have realized that my new job keeps me very busy for short spurts and leaves me lots of spare time in between.  Unfortunately it looks like one of those busy spots will be during May Day 2014 so I will have to miss that.  Sadly that means my plans for a new FUBAR game at 28mm will be side-lined for the time being.

Hopefully this inspires somebody to create their own hobby to do list or, God forbid, a chores or self-improvement list.